Since Tito’s Bodeguita opened just over three years ago it’s become a favourite lunch spot for us; visiting friends usually will end up there at some point.
For a start, Tito’s Bodeguita is a feast for the eyes let alone anything else; it’s set in a 17th century mansion complete with attached ermita. I’m a sucker for restaurants set in old houses; we’ve got quite a few dotted around the north of Tenerife and Tito’s Bodeguita is one of the nicest.
There are interior dining rooms but most people prefer to eat in the courtyard with its aesthetically pleasing combination of exotic flowers, rustic farming implements and colonial Canarian architecture.
In other words it’s a lovely spot for lunching outside.
Lying near the TF2 Motorway near Pueblo Chico, it’s too far from Puerto de la Cruz centre for people to stumble across accidentally which cuts down the number of visitors who eat there. But that doesn’t seem to matter. Tito’s Bodeguita is popular with the local population, both Canarios and ex-pats of varying nationalities, and as such there’s always been a good crowd of animated diners every time we’ve been there.
As well as looking the part, it’s professionally run. We’ve never had to wait long before being attended to by friendly, efficient waiters who know their stuff and can provide sound advice relating to the menu. That might sound obvious but we often ask in restaurants what unfamiliar dishes consist of and not everywhere has waiting staff that can answer.
Canarian Cuisine and Then Some: The Food at Tito’s Bodeguita
You can only get so far with good looks in a restaurant; you have to back it up with food that pleases and Tito’s comes out trumps on that score.
Much of the menu looks typically Canarian but often what arrives on your plate doesn’t. The presentation of the food has a flair that’s lacking in most traditional Canarian restaurants on Tenerife. Additionally for every conejo en salmorejo (rabbit in sauce) there’s a langostinos con batata frita y salsa de pimienta (langoustines with sweet potatoes and pepper sauce). These fusion dishes are often the best to opt for.
And they do proper salads at Tito’s Bodeguita – salads that have a sparkling personality; the octopus with a ginger and orange dressing is a world beater.
If that wasn’t enough Tito’s Bodeguito also caters for vegetarians… and does so with panache. On our last two visits we’ve had the hojaldre de puerros – a creamy, dreamy leek pie – simply because it is so good.
Special mention has to go to the capricho de pollo which is crispy chicken strips coated with almonds. It’s not something I’d normally choose as I’d be concerned it might be too close to chicken nuggets. But it was recommended to me, for which I’m eternally grateful.
The only dish that has disappointed me at Tito’s was calamares during our last visit. It seemed quite dull compared the other dishes which were bursting with glorious flavours. But that was just a blip in an otherwise immaculate record.
So if anyone is looking for a lovely, long lunch somewhere pretty special? I know just the place.
Tito’s Bodeguito, Camino del Durazno 1; Puerto de la Cruz; tel: (+34) 647 933 433; open daily 12.30pm to 11pm (closed Sunday); Main courses average around €10.
Jack is co-owner, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to lots of other places. Follow Jack on Google+